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Innovate UK funding for new precision cancer treatment technology

Sixfold Bioscience and Medicines Discovery Catapult awarded Innovate UK grant to pursue ground-breaking project


Sixfold Bioscience in partnership with Medicines Discovery Catapult, has been given the green light, through the award of an Innovate UK Smart Grant to test a pioneering system designed to deliver drugs directly to cancerous cells, without impacting the healthy cells around it.

Programmable Oligonucleotide Delivery System (PODS), developed by Sixfold Bioscience, is a versatile system which delivers short interfering RNA (siRNA) gene silencing cargo to specific cancer cells. This 18-month funded project with Medicines Discovery Catapult will focus on preclinical assessment, delivery system validation, and informing the clinical development strategy.


Figure 1 | Medicines Discovery Catapult's Alderley Park imaging facility. Image courtesy of MDC.


Drawing on the pre-clinical expertise and state of the art imaging facilities at Medicines Discovery Catapult, the project will accelerate the completion of a comprehensive preclinical data pack to pharmaceutical industry standards for rapid commercialisation and clinical advancement of Sixfold’s core platform technology.

Dr Anna Perdrix Rosell, co-founder and Managing Director of Sixfold Bioscience commented:

“We are thrilled to lead this collaborative project co-funded by Innovate UK. We are confident that by tapping into MDC’s unique drug development expertise and facilities, the collaboration will accelerate the preclinical development of our drug delivery system and its commercialisation. Our team’s ultimate goal is to unlock the true potential of siRNA therapeutics for cancer patients, and this collaboration takes us one step closer”

Professor Peter Simpson, Chief Scientific Officer at Medicines Discovery Catapult (MDC) added:

“We are delighted to work with Sixfold Bioscience on the validation and development of this innovative drug delivery system. Drawing on MDC’s strong track record of advancing drug delivery modalities and of complex medicines validation, this new partnership has the potential to rapidly progress this delivery modality towards commercial viability.”


About Innovate UK

Innovate UK is a government-funded public body, part of UK Research & Innovation — supporting business growth & development, and in particular the development and realisation of fresh ideas. Since 2007, IUK has invested ~£2.5 billion to help businesses across the country, and in combination with industry funding, the total value of projects has amounted to over £4.3 billion as of 2019. For more information, visit: www.innovateuk.ukri.org


About Sixfold Bioscience Ltd.

Sixfold Bioscience is a venture-backed preclinical-stage biotechnology company based at the Innovation and Translation Hub in White City, London. Sixfold develops nucleic acid-based drug delivery systems, with a current focus on Cell & Gene therapeutics such as short interfering RNA for gene silencing and messenger RNA for gene expression. For more information, visit: https://www.sixfold.bio

About Medicines Discovery Catapult

Medicines Discovery Catapult is a national facility connecting the UK community to accelerate innovative drug discovery.

We provide unique scientific capabilities and act as a gateway to UK resources and expertise, supporting UK SMEs to drive the development and industrialisation of new approaches for the discovery of new medicines.

By validating new ways of discovering medicines and driving key talent and expertise across the sector, we will support the UK life sciences industry, SMEs and innovators to deliver growth for the UK economy and maintain the UK’s heritage position as a global leader in medicines R&D.

Ultimately, new industrialised technologies are vital for delivering new medicines to patients, faster.



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